On Alt News, we have run several stories about fake videos and fake news that get propagated via social media. Considering the amount of fakery out there, my personal belief at this point in time is that an individual who inadvertently forwards a fake video or a fake piece of news which is viral on social media, he or she shouldn’t be charged under IPC sections that could lead to a jail sentence if convicted. Ignorance cannot be a reason to get jailed. Moreover, if we start jailing people for fake WhatsApp forwards, a huge population of India will have to be relocated to jails including some in my extended family. Instead, a hefty fine could be a good deterrent.

However, a website or a social media account like a Facebook page that repeatedly and deliberately spreads fake news, videos, images must face the most severe legal consequences that the law can afford in such cases. But the problem is that so many of these fake news websites keep their owner’s identity hidden and it is difficult for those who are not very technically savvy to find out who exactly is running the website. If you go and file a complaint with the police stating that such a website is running fake news, the police, in general, do not seem to be interested enough to investigate into these fakes news sites or take action against the individuals behind such fake sites. As a result, we have tens of fake news sites out there today generating random fake content, a lot of which is dangerous for the unity and integrity of the country.

In order to help people in finding the individuals behind various fake news sites, we will run a series of stories so that neither the aggrieved party nor the police has to struggle much in their investigation. While revealing the details of the website’s owner, we’ll also briefly explain the methodology that was used so that others can benefit from this. Let us start with DainikBharat.org as the first test case. We have caught DainikBharat.org propagating fake news on at least three occasions.

Fake right-wing propaganda against Ravish Kumar, claim his sister’s been suspended due to corruption charges – go.altnews.in/2qt2w4s
How fake news branded News Laundry’s Madhu Trehan as a leftist for her non-existent comments on Baahubali – go.altnews.in/2pVTLzO
While researching a fake fatwa, I stumbled upon the dark alley of fake news industry – go.altnews.in/2qsyoG2

There are many other documented cases where Dainik Bharat has been caught spreading fake news including using a 2 year old JNU Election celebration picture to show that students from JNU are celebrating Sukma attack, certain non-existent comments of Fawad Khan and that Pakistan had praised Mamta Banerjee.

DainikBharat.org is a repeat offender and the victims of this fake news campaign should know who’s behind this website. Usually, I start by looking up the WHOIS information for a domain name which gives the details such as name, address, phone number and email address using which a domain name was registered, i.e. if those details are not masked/hidden using a paid service. This is publicly available information. In fact, every bit of information that’ll be presented in this post is publicly available if one knows where to look. By the end of this post, we’ll see how the owner of Dainik Bharat website possibly has a FIR against him even before Dainik Bharat started. In this specific case, the whois information is available => https://www.whois.com/whois/dainikbharat.org. Similarly, one can go to the whois website and look for information regarding any domain. Let’s look at the whois information for DainikBharat.org.

Whois information of DainikBharat.org

According to this, the name of the person registered is Shashi Singh, the email address is littichoka@gmail.com and phone number is +91.9728987971 and the domain was registered in February 2016.

I also typically use a service called Wayback Machine which takes snapshots of websites at various point of time in the past. I use it to see what the initial version of a website looks like. This is what DainikBharat.org looked like in February 2016. It is the oldest snapshot of DainikBharat available on web.archive.org => http://web.archive.org/web/20160207052035/dainikbharat.org. If you scroll down the archived version of the website, this is what you get.

Dainik Bharat web.archive.org whatsapp number

So, the owners of Dainik Bharat had advertised a WhatsApp number on the initial version of their website, which matches the phone number that they gave during domain registration. While the name Shashi Singh is very common and littichoka@gmail.com doesn’t seem like an email address that’ll be used for official correspondence, the phone number “9728987971” is a unique piece of information that we can further delve into. If we look up this number on truecaller, nothing concrete comes out. It shows that the name is “Vicky Vicky” which doesn’t sound like a real name. So we google the number and this is what we can see, the number has been mentioned on the Dainik Bharat Facebook page at least a couple of times.

Googling Ravi Singh's phone number

We open one of the posts that is mentioned in the Google Search results.

Dainik Bharat post which shows Ravi Singh is the Chief Editor

This post again mentions the same WhatsApp number as seen earlier and in addition, states that Ravi Singh is the Chief Editor of Dainik Bharat. We next google ‘”ravi singh” dainik bharat’.

Ggoogle Search results for Ravi Singh Dainik Bharat

This search throws up a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/RaviSingh216), a LinkedIn Account, couple of mentions of “Ravi Singh” in the Dainik Bharat website itself and couple more Twitter links. We will use each one of those to garner more information about Ravi Singh. Lets start with the LinkedIn Account => https://www.linkedin.com/in/ravi-singh-b89b7289/.

Ravi Singh Dainik Bharat Linkedin Profile

Now we have a face to the name. Ravi Singh in his LinkedIn profile has mentioned that he’s the Editor in Chief of Dainik Bharat. But who is Ravi Singh and who are his associates? To find out more, we’ll look at the Facebook Page that we saw in the Google Search Results above (https://www.facebook.com/RaviSingh216). Unfortunately, this Facebook page is deleted. Thankfully for us, Google caches various elements on the Internet for an undefined period of time and they happened to have cached Ravi Singh’s now deleted page => http://bit.ly/2qS45sB. In case Google decides to delete links that have been long dead from its cache, its best to take a backup of the cache itself. For that, we will use a service called “archive.is” which is much like the web.archive.org service we saw earlier. While web.archive.org is an automated website snapshot service, archive.is backs up websites on demand. We have backed up the Google cache of the now deleted Ravi Singh Facebook page here => http://archive.is/IiMpd.

Ravi Singh Deleted Facebook Page

The Google Cache version of Ravi Singh’s Facebook page sports a picture of RSS ideologue VD Savarkar. If you scroll down the page, you’ll see multiple shares of the DainikBharat website which would indicate that we’re probably looking at the same Ravi Singh who claims himself to be the Chief Editor of Dainik Bharat website. If we scroll further down, we will see a certain set of pictures which Ravi Singh has shared from a page called Hindu Sena. In these pictures, they seem to be advertising a T-shirt with the slogan “Being Hindu” which they sold to their supporters.

Ravi Singh shared Hindu Sena pictures

Thankfully, for us, the Hindu Sena Page still exists and hence we can access those pictures here => https://www.facebook.com/HinduSenaOfficial/posts/891274427588221. We downloaded the pictures are they’re now available here.

The shorter guy is Vishnu Gupta who calls himself the Founder and National President of Hindu Sena. He’s been charged with multiple acts of physical assaults and vandalism in the past. More recently, he was in news because his group celebrated Donald Trump’s Birthday, fed cake to a large poster featuring Donald Trump and did a ‘Havan Pujan’ praying for Donald Trump’s victory a few days later.

Vishnu Gupta Twitter Profile

Zooming into the picture will show that the guy Vishnu Gupta is standing with is Ravi Singh himself. Below, we compare Ravi Singh’s LinkedIn Picture with a cut-out of the guy standing with Vishnu Gupta. We see that the features are uncannily similar.

Ravi Singh Zoomed In

In fact, Ravi Singh was even acknowledged by the ‘USAHindus4Trump’ Twitter handle.

Ravi Singh HIndus For Trump

Ravi Singh old Twitter account

Ravi Singh’s Twitter handle has now been renamed from @rrksingh21 to @realravii, and one can see that he’s posted videos and images of the prayer for Trump that the Hindu Sena Group had carried out on his Twitter profile.

Video: we prayed god to make realdonaldtrump US president to wipe out islamic terror from globe.

What else can we find about Ravi Singh? According to Ravi Singh’s LinkedIn profile, before starting the Dainik Bharat venture, Ravi Singh used to work in a company called ‘Renovate n Care’ as a Business Development Manager. When we googled ‘”ravi singh” renovate n care’, Google threw up another phone number 7053161976. Truecaller associates that number with Ravi Singh. Upon Googling ‘renovate n care 7053161976’, we found Ravi Singh’s email address => iamravi216@gmail.com.

Ravi Singh renovate n care

Ravi Singh Truecaller 7053161976

Ravi Singh Email address

Typically, people tend to reuse usernames across multiple social media accounts. So, we googled for “iamravi216” which is the username Ravi Singh has for Gmail. This is what we found. Apparently, a Twitter account @iamravi216 had put out a fake picture of KV (Kumar Vishwas) with a girl and that a FIR has been failed against this person. That person’s name is also Ravi Singh and the name was mentioned in the FIR.

Google Search Results for iamravi216

Here are the screenshots of the relevant tweets.

Rightwing goon Ravi Singh @iamravi216 posted random pic of a vol & KV on FB after media stories

He @iamravi216 share it on his page Facebook.com/RaviSingh216 and right wing & BJP trolls started spreading it on Whatsapp & FB

This photo reaches the girl in the poster created by @iamravi216 & she filed an FIR against this guy and few other.

Here is the copy of FIR which names @iamravi216 and 3 other people. Delhi police still not able to trace them.

In the second tweet above, it is mentioned that Ravi Singh originally posted this picture on his Facebook page “facebook.com/ravisingh216” which we earlier saw that it was the Facebook Page of Dainik Bharat editor Ravi Singh. If Delhi Police had the inclination, they could have found the guy back in 2015 thus preventing him from making the Fake News Site Dainik Bharat which he registered in 2016. However, due to lack of any inclination on the part of Delhi Police, now we have a full fleged fake news website which is in the top 4000 websites in India according to Alexa Rankings. To put things in perspective, a rather popular media watchdog website NewsLaundry has an Alexa Ranking of 6131 which is close to 2500 notches below that of DainikBharat. Alt News in a short span of 3 months has achieved a rank of 7971 in India.

Alexa Ranking of DainikBharat.org

We’ve found out who Ravi Singh is. His two phone numbers are 9728987971 and 7053161976, his email address is iamravi216@gmail.com, his present Twitter account is @realravii and that he possibly has an FIR against him for distributing a fake pic of an AAP volunteer with Kumar Vishwas and stating that they had an affair. There is also the FIR that JNU students filed against DainikBharat.org for circulating an old picture of election celebrations and stating that they were celebrating the Sukma Naxal attack on CRPF Jawans. In the very first set of Google Results, we saw Ravi Singh’s name come up in Dainik Bharat’s website. When we followed that lead, we found that the present Facebook account that Ravi Singh is using is => https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100008537796839.

Ravi Singh's present Facebook profile

We also might have found ‘Shashi Singh’ in whose name the domain has originally been registered. Shashi Singh could be the third guy posing with the “Being Hindu” t-shirt along with Vishnu Gupta and Ravi Singh. We found out his Twitter profile because Vishnu Gupta would often mention/tag Shashi Singh in his tweets. Shashi Singh’s Twitter handle is @solicitorShashi.

Shashi-Singh-solicitorshashi-lawyer

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So, we have both Shashi Singh whose name the DainikBharat.org domain is probably registered in and Ravi Singh who is the Editor-in-Chief of the website. Hopefully, next time an FIR is filed against them, Delhi Police will have enough information to proceed with the case. Or does Delhi Police already have this information, all of which is available publicly as evident from this post, and doesn’t want to proceed against them for political reasons? We’ll find out sooner than later. Considering the amount of fake news DainikBharat.org generates, another police complaint must be around the corner.

We’ll go for a bigger fish in our next story in this series
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32 Comments on "Who runs the fake news website Dainikbharat.org? Let us find out."

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sarmad khan
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Gud work done team..
Baas ik baar postcard.com walo ki aur itar do in bewakoofo ki zaban band ho jayegi. ..

MithunOnthe.Net
Guest

Useful information. Not just knowing who the people behind such fake news site are, but the process of how one can go about finding who these liars are.

Aleem
Guest

Awesome work dude, That requires a lot of time. KEEP IT UP!!!

Ataaf
Guest

wonderful job done by you, congratulations..
it was very tough to find such cyber criminals.

Bhupendra Yadav
Guest

Love the systematic research. Pratik Sinha you are a great investigator. Proud of you and prouder of your acumen to find these Hindutva bugs.

abc
Guest

Well done!

Anupam
Guest

Good job guys..The bastard of dainik bharat is trying hard to get a followed by Modi..
But what is use of this hard work?You know law and media has been controlled by their masters..

Prankur Gupta
Guest

This is the first time I am reading a story at altnews. Came to know of it a few days back when Ravish Kumar mentioned it in his show. Pretty brilliant work. Unlike, most other so called ‘myth-breaking’ websites such as opindia, nothing in this article seems dubious, since everything is publicly available and all information is brilliantly triangulated. Thank you for doing such great work!

agh
Guest

if you google littichoka@gmail.com, you get another website registered under that name called expresshindi.com see http://website.informer.com/email/littichoka@gmail.com

Abid
Guest

Kudos for great amount of research work and exposing the persons behind fake news dainikbharat.org & criminal elements behind it. Keep up the good work & do more revelations in this anti social nexus.

Abdul
Guest

great investigative journalism..had this been associated with aap or congress your piece of work would have been hailed like any thing…but you took on the emperor’s syncopants… so no glory dear….keep up the good work…

Shashi Singh
Guest

मेरा नाम शशि सिंह है। littichokha@gmail.com मेरा ई-मेल आईडी है। पिछले डेढ़ दशक से इंटरनेट पर हिन्दी में लिखता पढ़ता आ रहा हूँ। मीडिया से भी ताल्लूक रहा है। इंटरनेट पर पब्लिक डोमेन का आदमी रहा हूँ। हैरान हूँ यह देखकर कि मेरे नाम और ई-मेल का इस तरह से दुरुपयोग किया गया है। चूँकि डोमेन बुक करने पर किसी तरह का आई-डी वैरिफिकेशन नहीं होता इसीलिए इस तरह की हरकत पर कोई लगाम नहीं है।

Aniruddh Sharma
Guest
1.) अगर दुरुपयोग किया गया हैं और अब आपकी जानकारी में भी हैं तो आप पुलिस में FIR क्यो नही करते, दुरुपयोग करने वाले पर? 2.) यह नाटक बंद कर, ऐसा नही हैं कि कोई मोदी का मेल आई डी डाल दे और मोदी फंस जाए। खाली ईमेल से कुछ नही होता जिसके पास पासवर्ड नही होगा वो खाली डोमेन रजिस्टर्ड करा के क्या कर लेगा? अगर में आपका ईमेल डाल दू पर मेरे पास पासवर्ड नही तो उस डोमेन को कैसे यूज़ करूँगा? वेबसाइट की हॉस्टिंग कैसे करूँगा? और अगर ईमेल हैक हुआ हैं तो पुलिस FIR कर नही… Read more »
saibal
Guest

Great job guys. These fake sites and their owners with malicious intentions needs to be named and shamed openly. Thank you again

m.v.ramana
Guest

good job and great investigative journalism

Amit jha
Guest

Mind blowing… I always wanted to know about the real bastard…… Who runs this fake news.
Luckily i came to know by alt news.
Thanks a lot…. Will share withe mu dumb bhakt friends.

Manna
Guest

Ever heard about R-NDTV??
India today?
Barkha
Raveesh Kumar
Prasoon Vajpayee
Your own gang of Natwarlals
Pronoy roy
Sardesai duo

susu
Guest

I think they have changed the details… obviously after u wrote this..check that whois.com website

Rahul
Guest

Why don’t you open Detective Agency 😉 I mean hats off. The way you people had taken the mask off from this Fake Website. Its incredible! Keep it Up!

Nahton
Guest

may be somehow connected to the guy whose website you inspected sometimes back, that guy from muzaffarpur

Harry
Guest

Thanks for this valuable information and for raising the question about the inaction of delhi police

Mitesh
Guest

I wish there are more like you in the country. We need them desperately. 🙏

Anand Selvam
Guest

Why are they creating all this false news? Are they planning to create civil disturbance or divide the nation or something more sinister? And a lot of people are being brain washed and in their grip. Sad that this happening in our Country. Tks ALT news for exposing these scoundrels.

Punit
Guest

bahut faaltu time hai tere paas….

Indy
Guest

What about the well known site like ndtv openly propagating fake news ? What’s going to happen even you know who owns the site ?

Mahesh
Guest

Great Job Pratik. Like your systematic approach and research.

Sagar
Guest

Wow….just wow….what a brilliant work man….hats off…b

RAVINDRA MALVE
Guest

Keep it up Dude…..Fantastic.,

Vishal
Guest

Take a bow 🙏

More power to you.
✌️

Ahmed
Guest

Mind blowing….!!!! Had it been started few years ago…!! It will take time to expose propaganda but it would be… More power to you.

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